Mater Lakes makes school history at John Lyzott

Mater Lakes makes school history at John Lyzott

Mater Lakes made school history on Saturday, winning the first-ever IBT title in school history, topping the John Lyzott Memorial IBT at McArthur.

The Bears, ranked sixth in the Orlando Sentinel’s latest Class 1A team rankings, finished with five individual champions, outscoring Coral Park and South Broward by 52 points.

Week 2 tournament results from across Florida »

“We are pumped,” Mater Lakes coach Brandon Neifeld said via email. “We started this program six years ago from scratch and the team is looking very good and coming into form.”

“We have six seniors in the lineup, all capable of reaching the podium at states.”

Winning titles on Saturday were Danny Martinez (106), Nick Luna (120), Omar Amengol (132), David Alvarez (220), and Ethan Vargas (285). Nestor Nunez (16) also reached the finals as the Bears won with a team effort with 10 wrestlers making the podium.

“It feels great to see the kids achieving success not only individually but as a team because we really developed a family type of bond together at Mater Lakes,” Neifeld said. ‘”We have very limited facilities at our school but it doesn’t stop us from training and competing with the best teams.”

limited facilities at our school but it doesn’t stop us from training and competing with the best teams.”

Check out the latest Class 3A individual rankings »

Coral Park and South Broward finished in a tie for second place. Steven Villalobos (152) won an individual title for Coral Park with Justin Maynard (160) taking home top honors for South Broward.

Michael Sarron (126) and Alex Chitty (138) both won titles for fourth-place Coral Springs Charter

Results — Rankings based on Orlando Sentinel rankings

Team scores: 1. Mater Lakes 230; 2. South Broward, Coral Park 178; 4. Coral Springs Charter 167.5; 5. Cypress Bay 156; 6. Goleman 143; 7. Taravella 118; 8. Ft. Lauderdale, Nova 92; 10. Deerfield Beach 64.5; 11. McArthur 53.5; 12. Everglades, Miramar 47; 14. Monarch 46.5; 15. Douglas, Western 45; 17. Calvary Christian 25.

Finals: 106: #4-1A Danny Martinez (Mater Lakes) p. Alex Couto (Coral Park) 3:57

113: #19-3A Justin Huertas (Taravella) p. #18-3A Nico Cava (Monarch) 5:23

120: #2-1A Nick Luna (Mater Lakes) maj. dec. #7-2A Anthony Montanez (South Broward) 15-5

126: #8-1A Michael Sarron (Coral Springs Charter) p. Frank Indiero (Goleman) 1:09

132: #5-1A Omar Armengol (Mater Lakes) maj. dec. #20-3A Eddie Punzalan (Cypress Bay) 18-4

138: #10-1A Alex Chitty (Coral Springs Charter) maj. dec. Marlo Garcia (South Broward) 9-0

145: #8-3A Steven Erched (Douglas) dec. #7-1A Terrell Taylor (Coral Springs Charter) 12-9

152: #3-3A Steven Villalobos (Coral Park) p. #12-2A Raul Chavarry (Goleman) 3:08

160: #3-2A Justin Maynard (South Broward) dec. #3-1A Nestor Nunez (Mater Lakes) 6-3

170: Emerson Derose (Miramar) dec. #10-1A Tyler Vargas (Coral Springs Charter) 10-8

182: #15-3A Christian Deluna (Cypress Bay) dec. Coby Newton (Taravella) 6-3

195: #12-3A Caio De Almeida (Cypress Bay) p. Jesus Rodriguez (McArthur) 5:22

220: #10-1A David Alvarez (Mater Lakes) dec. #12-3A Julian D’orazio (Fort Lauderdale) 7-0

285: #13-1A Ethan Vargas (Mater Lakes) dec. Kareem Crawford (South Broward) 5-4

Check out the latest Class 1A individual rankings »

Mater Lakes makes school history at John Lyzott

Mater Lakes makes school history at John Lyzott

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: Dec 10, 2018
  • Category: News, School News

SPORTS, LEADERSHIP, ARTS & MANAGEMENT OSCEOLA is the newest member of the Slam Family

SPORTS, LEADERSHIP, ARTS & MANAGEMENT OSCEOLA – A TUITION-FREE PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOL SERVING STUDENTS IN GRADES 6th-8th is the newest member of the Sports, Leadership, Arts & Management family of high performing charter schools. The brand-new facility is located at 611 Heritage Park Way, Kissimmee, FL 34744.  With plans to add high school grades in years to come, the vision of Sports, Leadership, Arts & Management Osceola is to produce college bound and career-oriented graduates. With career academies designed to provide unique educational experiences, with internship opportunities for high school students in areas such as Sports Management, Medicine, Multimedia and Graphic Design, Broadcasting Communications, and more.

“My goal is to develop a high-energy, college-preparatory academy that transforms classrooms into vibrant learning environments that build expert problem solvers,” Principal Monique Machado said. “Couple this energy with learning academies designed to provide job shadow opportunities and professional internships and the results are confident, driven high school graduates that are prepared for the challenges of both college and career.”

“Our goal is to engage students and promote high achievement for all students,” Ms. Machado added.

2019-2020 applications are currently being accepted for students entering 6th grade through 9th grade at  or by calling 407-569-7637.

Sports, Leadership, Arts & Management Academy provides students with unique access to career mentors, athletes as role models, and executive internships through educational partnerships with local and national sports franchises. By fostering these and other long-term relationships, students at Sports, Leadership, Arts & Management Academy benefit from real world learning experiences within all facets of the sports industry.

Additionally, the school will benefit from partnerships with local and national sports organizations such as the Florida Fire Frogs, Osceola Heritage Park, Orlando Sea Wolves, NBA, MLB and NASCAR through its affiliation with the National SLAM! Foundation, which also provides support.

For more information about the SLAM! network please visit

The quality of the educational programs and system effectiveness over the past decade demonstrate SLAM! Foundation’s commitment to ongoing improvement efforts and academic progress.   

Charter Schools are…

  • Tuition-free public schools
  • Accountable for academic results
  • Required to employ highly qualified state-certified teachers
  • Required to participate in state standardized exam (FSA)
  • Required to meet Annual Yearly Progress, under the No Child Left Behind Act

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: Oct 30, 2018
  • Category: News


Pinecrest Academy, Inc. celebrates its expansion in the Avalon community

Orange County, FL – On Friday October 19th, Pinecrest Academy Avalon students, faculty, community leaders and board members celebrated the school’s grand opening ribbon cutting. Principal Yasmeen Khan was joined by the Board Chair of Pinecrest Academy, Inc., Dr. Judith Marty. Several Pinecrest Academy Inc. board members along with Orange County Public School board member, Ms. Daryl Flynn and Avalon Park Community leaders attended the ribbon cutting ceremony that began at 10 a.m. at the school site located 13993 Mailer Blvd., Orlando, FL 32828.

This tuition-free public charter school opened its doors in August 2018 to 200 students from Kindergarten through 5th grade. The school’s curriculum will allow for students to experience a rigorous curriculum with an enhanced focus on Project Lead the Way STEM curriculum, Coding and a Positive Behavior Supports Character Education program.  

Mrs. Khan, the Principal said, “I am very proud of our achievements thus far. In a short time, we have implemented many research based programs which students are enjoying.  I love seeing the excitement on the students’ faces when they come to school every day.  That alone, makes my job very rewarding.’’

Accredited by AdvancED/SACS, Pinecrest Academy Avalon is the fourth Pinecrest Academy School in Central Florida, and joins Pinecrest’s growing roster of high-performing charter schools in Florida. The organization has a proven track record of developing a network of successful charter schools throughout Miami and has been seeking to expand its program throughout the state. Pinecrest’s strategic formula of establishing schools in areas of great need has made it an instrumental resource in accelerating student and school performance nationwide for the past decade.
Academica, one of the nation’s longest-serving and most successful charter school service and support organizations, is the education service provider for Pinecrest Academy, Inc. as well as for over 175 charter schools in Florida.  More information about Pinecrest Avalon is available at

For immediate release                    
October 23, 2018

For more information, contact:
Mr. Fernando Barroso


Mr. Fernando Barroso
Ms. Jessica Brown
Dr. Judy Marty
Ms. Yasmeen Khan
Mr. Carlos Alvarez
Ms. Shannie Sadesky

Mr. Michael Williamson (RD Michaels)
Ross Halle (Avalon Park Group)
Beat Khali (Avalon Park Group)
Dr. Judy Marty (Pinecrest Board Chair)
Dr. Kia Sweeney Scott (Director of School Choice OCPS)
Mr. Julio Robaina (CEO of Academica?) I was not sure of his title
Ms. Yasmeen Khan (Principal)
Ms. Jessica Brown (Lead Teacher)
Ms. Daryl Flynn (OCPS district 2 board member)
Mr. Juan Molina (Pinecrest board member)
Ms. Shannie Sadesky (Pinecrest board member)
Mr. Carlos Alvarez (Pinecrest board member)




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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: Oct 29, 2018
  • Category: News, School News
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New $12M charter school to open in vacant Four Corners supermarket on U.S. 27

Article by Laura Kinsler

A Jacksonville-based charter school developer has secured county approvals to open a K-8 charter school in a former Winn Dixie supermarket on U.S. 27 in south Lake County.

Taylor Smith, president of Project Finance & Development Inc., said the new Pinecrest Academy in Four Corners would serve up to 1,050 students from all four counties. The school site is about a half mile north of Cagan Crossings and one mile north of the U.S. 192 intersection.

from the county. Lake County Schools awarded a charter beginning in Fall 2019.

The new Pinecrest Academy in Four Corners would renovate and repurpose the 49,000-square-foot supermarket, outlined in red, while another 15,316 would be reserved for future expansion.

Severns and Smith said that the project involves the complete conversion of the closed 49,000-square-foot Winn Dixie store into a new state-of-the-art charter school, as well as the redevelopment of a portion of the parking lot to provide parent drop-off and pick-up areas, recreational fields and playground areas. The school would feature the latest educational technology for students as well as high-tech security and safety features, they said.

The Four Corners school represents the second Pinecrest Academy charter school in Lake County, with the other A-rated Pinecrest K-8 School
in Minneola.

Florida Engineering Group provided civil work. The school is being designed by Miami-based Civica Architecture Group and will be built in two phases, with the second phase involving a 15,000-square-foot expansion of the existing facility.

Pinecrest officials are also working with Lake County School officials to avoid duplication of services between the charter school and a planned K-8 public school to serve the growing Four Corners area. The school district has a 35- acre site nearby and is designing a traditional campus to open as early as August 2021.

The development team has been active in charter school development in Central Florida. Smith’s PF&D Inc. provided the financial backing for a new

Mater Academy in St. Cloud, and Severns represented BridgePrep Academy on the land acquisition and permitting for its new Poinciana charter school.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at or (407) 420-6261, or tweet me at @LKinslerOGrowth. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Full article at

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: Oct 11, 2018
  • Category: News
KWCA Senior Raquel Brady Earns Perfect Score

Raquel Brady Nominated for the Academic Presidential Scholar’s Award

Raquel Brady, senior at KWCA, has been nominated for the Academic Presidential Scholar Award. Touting a GPA over 4.4 and coming off a recent perfect score on the US History FSA EOC Raquel is on a roll. In addition to recently passing her AP Biology exam Raquel is currently enrolled in her 4th Dual Enrollment class at FKCC. If those stats are not impressive enough her writing is. Mr. Horan, KWCA English Teacher, submitted examples of Raquel’s work with his nomination for the award. In addition to poetry, he submitted “Conversations Over Catnip,” a short story which can be read by the title of this announcement.

KWCA Senior Raquel Brady Earns Perfect Score

KWCA Senior Raquel Brady Earns Perfect Score

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: May 9, 2018
  • Category: News

Students and Teachers from Academica celebrated Teacher Appreciation Day at Y100!

The full interview video was added to Mack’s page in an awesome article about cool freebies for Teacher’s week:

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: May 4, 2018
  • Category: News

Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School Among the first to join the new College Board Pre-AP Program

New Pre-AP program offers instructional resources and classroom-based assessments to improve college readiness for all students.

Miami, FL — Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School was selected from over 1,000 schools worldwide that will participate in the new Pre-AP Program next school year. Pre-AP is designed to give all students the opportunity to learn the foundational knowledge and skills they need to be successful in Advanced Placement and other college-level coursework. The College Board selected Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School as a partner who is committed to college readiness for all students.

With this prestigious accolade, Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School continues to expand its partnership with the CollegeBoard “Incorporating the Pre-AP curriculum at our school continues to support our mission of giving all of our students, regarding of ability level, equal access to a challenging, college-bound curriculum”, stated Maria Beatriz Nuñez, Principal.

Participation in challenging coursework helps prepare students for success in high school and beyond. However, less than 50% of U.S. high school students are ready for college. And more than 300,000 high school students are not taking AP courses and exams that they have demonstrated the potential to succeed on, based on their scores on an SAT Suite assessment. With this data in mind – along with feedback from teachers who have said they would like to help shape a curriculum that prepares students before they enter an AP class – the College Board has developed the Pre-AP Program.

Pre-AP courses are open to all students. The Pre-AP Program objectives are to:

  •   Significantly increase the number of students who are able to access and complete college-level work—like AP—before leaving high school.
  •   Improve the college readiness of all students.Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School will receive an official Pre-AP designation for each course and the chance to bring engaging coursework to all their students. This designation signals consistent, high standards in focused courses that help build, strengthen, and reinforce student’s content knowledge and skills. The eight new 9th grade courses provide teachers and students with instructional resources, classroom-based assessments, high-quality professional learning, and focused practice.

    “We applaud the educators and administrators in Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School who have worked to clear a path for all of their students,” said Auditi Chakravarty, Vice President of SpringBoard and Pre-AP Programs. “They are fostering a culture in their schools and classrooms that allows all students to learn the foundational knowledge and skills they need to be successful.”

    Each Pre-AP course has been developed by committees of expert educators, including middle school, high school, and college faculty. These development committees work with the College Board to design effective instructional resources that emphasize and prioritize the content and skills that matter most for later high school coursework and college and career readiness. Pre-AP will continue to evolve through educator involvement, and Pinecrest Preparatory Academy Charter High School will be a critical partner. Throughout the initial cohort experience, Pre-AP course teachers will be encouraged to share feedback that will help shape the program in years to come.

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  • Posted by: Luis Beyra
  • Posted On: Apr 26, 2018
  • Category: News, School News
Photo Apr 20, 9 37 53 AM

The Zimriyah at Ben Gamla Charter School

Israeli culture & entertainment was on full display on Friday, April 20, 2018 at the Ben Gamla Charter School located on 8600 Jog Road in Boynton Beach.  The K-5th tuition free charter school, which provides a Hebrew language program, celebrated Yom Ha’Atzmaut (Israel’s Independence Day) Zimriyah.

What is a Zimriyah…?

The Zimriyah is an Israeli Song & Dance Performance that the Ben Gamla students put on each year celebrating Israel’s Independence Day.  The event took place at the Temple Torat Emet Social Hall from 8:30am – 10am.



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Mater Lakes Academy Qualify Eight Students for Nationals

Miami, FL, Monday, April 23, 2018 – Mater Lakes Academy had fourty-two students that competed at the Future Business Leaders of America’s State Leadership Conference.  The FBLA SLC was held March 15th – 18th in Orlando.

“The students spent several weeks preparing for their state competition especially the students that had not competed before,” said Mr. Giovanni Lorenzo, FBLA Sponsor.

This is the first time that Mater Lakes Academy has had eight students qualify during the State Leadership Conference to attend the National Competition. Katheryn Kalouf, Isabella Milanes, and Rosa Aleman placed in first in the E-Business category.  Simon Kato, Derek Velez, and Natalie Lopez, placed in second place in Mobile Application Design.  Octavio Calvo placed 5th in Global Business category and Maria Reyes placed fifth in Insurance and Risk Management.

FBLA members will compete at the National Leadership Conference in Baltimore, Maryland from June 28th – July 1st.  This four-day conference is the highest level of competition for FBLA members. FBLA will have created partnerships with industry leaders to design and judge their competitive events.  Students achieving national ranking can earn scholarships through FBLA and their partners.

“It is amazing what our students have been able to accomplish over the years, it seems like each year we have more and more students qualify,” said Mr. Rene Rovirosa, Principal.

Mater Lakes Academy is a Miami-Dade County Public Charter School, with students enrolled in 6th – 12th grade.  Mater Lakes Academy has been open since the 2006-2007 academic school year, and is currently in its 12th year under the direction of Principal Rene F. Rovirosa, and is an A school for both the middle school and the high school.  For more information, visit the school’s website at


Mrs. Alice Martinez
Mater Lakes Academy
Phone:  (305) 698-8000
Fax:  (305) 698-1800


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Mater Lakes Academy’s Principal is Named Top Principal by Florida TaxWatch

Miami, FL, Monday, April 23, 2018 – Principal, Rene F. Rovirosa of Mater Lakes Academy was named one of the top nine principals in the State of Florida, by Florida TaxWatch, and one of the top three in the high school division in August.  On Thursday, April 19th, Florida Tax Watch held their Principal Leadership Award dinner, and amongst the three nominees in the high school category he was awarded the top principal.

Florida TaxWatch is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit taxpayer research institute.  According to their website, “Its research recommends productivity enhancements and explains the statewide impact of fiscal and economic policies and practices on citizens and businesses.”

Florida TaxWatch established their Principal Leadership Awards Program in 2014.  The criteria used to name the top 3 principals per grade division (elementary, middle, and high school) is not done through a nomination basis, but it is data driven.  Florida TaxWatch basis their criteria on data received from the Florida Department of Education, using assessment scores, their learning gains, and the percentage of students that are ELL, SPED, and economically disadvantaged and their progress.  Mater Lakes Academy has 4% learning gain in English and Language Arts and a 14% learning gain in Mathematics.  Mater Lakes Academy exceeded both the state and district percentage of proficiency at 71%.

“I am honored, there are no other words to describe it, but just that I am honored,” said Principal Rene F. Rovirosa.  “I truly feel that they key to a better community is quality education, and that is what we are providing because this award is not just mine but all of Mater Lakes.”  Earlier in the school year, Mr. Rovirosa was also awarded the 2017 Charter School Champion Leader Award by the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools.

Mater Lakes Academy is a Miami-Dade County Public Charter School, with students enrolled in 6th – 12th grade.  Mater Lakes Academy has been open since the 2006-2007 academic school year, and is currently in its 12th year under the direction of Principal Rene F. Rovirosa, and is an A school for both the middle school and the high school.  For more information, visit the school’s website at


Mrs. Alice Martinez
Mater Lakes Academy
Phone:  (305) 698-8000
Fax:  (305) 698-1800



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